There are three main pieces of advice I would give to someone that wishes to become an All-American. One is to know the rules, not only of the sport of trapshooting, but the rules of how All-American points are divvied out per trophy. Two is to attend the right shoots. Three is to practice consistency. I will address each in more detail below.
Knowing the rules not only helps you become a better sportsmen, it also helps you become an ambassador and leader among the sport. These traits are important to have once you have reached the All-American status because your peers start to expect a higher level of knowledge and integrity of the game. We have all, unfortunately, seen the young All-American that has had a poor attitude, was accused of cheating, and claims to have always been cheated when they didn’t win. These individuals tend to disappear from the sport as quickly as they showed up.
You also need to understand how the All-American points are given for winning trophies because you will need to make decisions on whether it is better to take a category trophy over a class trophy. Or whether you should shoot-off for a champion trophy or if you should take a category or class trophy out right. There are really no standards to this, you just need to make these decisions per event as they happen.
Knowing which shoots to attend is important because you will have to shoot at the shoots with the highest All-American Point multiplier. It is better to attend a larger shoot with a multiplier of 5 or more than it is to attend a smaller shoot with a multiplier of say 2. Being at a larger shoot means that it is more difficult to win trophies, but you are awarded more for a win there than you are at small shoots. I also recommend going to as many satellite grands as you can possibly attend. These are good shoots to accumulate points at for two reasons, every event counts and they tend to be a larger multiplier than other shoots.
What I mean by every event counts is that all preliminary events have points where your state shoots and other shoots only have points for the class events and championship events. I am fortunate in the fact that I live in Western Pennsylvania, so I live within 300 miles of most of the largest shoots in the country. I have also been fortunate enough to be able to travel to almost every satellite grand across the country.
Consistency is needed in order to obtain enough points to be considered for a spot on the team. You can’t make the team by winning one trophy all year, you need to shoot consistently well all year to help you accumulate points. This is done with lots of practice and concentration. You also have to show up on the line for every event to execute every shot correctly and win the event.
Of course more than anything, you have to have the desire to accomplish your goals.